Malacañang Roll (Chocolate Fudge and Meringue Roll)

September 21, 2020
Malacanang roll

I first became acquainted with this delicious roll from my grandparents’ majordoma, Florencia (Esia) Guiao. She was commissioned to bake this roll every family Sunday gathering. All the while, I thought it was my great grandmother, Luisa Fernandez Lichauco, who invented this cake. But when we had our first grand Lichauco reunion, I then found out, that it was her daughter, Cornelia, who invented it. It was called Malacañang Roll, because their family used to live near the Presidential Palace – Malacañang.  I have tweaked the recipe to make the roll more moist.

If making a roll seems daunting, you can divide the batter into two round cake tins and it will still taste the same. You can fill and top the cake with fudge and meringue. In the photograph, I torch the meringue to give it that grilled look and to prevent the meringue from ‘crying’.

Torched meringue topping also gives this roll a nice caramel-like taste
You can also pipe the meringue into neat rows.
Torching it really makes it prettier and taste better, too.

Malacañang Roll (Chocolate Fudge and Meringue Roll)

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By Marianne de Leon Serves: 8-12
Prep Time: 1 hr Cooking Time: 1 hr Total Time: 2 hrs

Vanilla sponge cake roll filled with chocolate fudge and topped with meringue named after the Philippine Presidential Palace - Malacañang


  • Sponge cake
  • 4 eggs - separated
  • 1 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 ½ tablespoons cold water
  • 1 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (200 grams) sugar - divide into ¾ cup and ¼ cup
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1 cup (120 grams) cake flour - sifted
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons baking powder
  • Chocolate Fudge Filling
  • 4 tablespoons cocoa or 120 grams semi-sweet chocolate
  • 3 ½ cups evaporated milk
  • 1 ½ cups (300 grams) sugar
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 4 tablespoons (56 grams) butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Meringue Icing
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 cup (200 grams) sugar
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence


Sponge cake


Preheat oven to 235º-240ºF (112ºC - 115ºC)


In a medium sized mixing bowl, place egg yolks, lemon juice, cold water, and vanilla extract; beat until thick and pale; about 8 minutes. Gradually add ¾ cup of the sugar and blend well. Set aside.


Beat the egg whites separately until foamy, add the salt, and continue beating until the whites form soft peaks. Gradually add the remaining ¼ cup of sugar and beat until stiff but not dry. Gently stir a fourth of the whites into the yolk mixture. Spoon the remaining whites onto the yolk mixture.


Sift flour and baking powder in a separate bowl. Carefully fold in flour/baking powder mixture into egg mixture.


Spoon into prepared pan and level off.


For jelly roll sheet pan - bake 10 to 12 minutes. You must be careful not to overbake the roll or it will be dry.


For round tins - bake 15 to 20 minutes or till toothpick comes out clean.

To un-mold jelly roll sponge:


Over cooling rack, place tea towel (katcha cloth) and open up to spread as large as the jelly roll tin/sheet pan. Generously dust flour all over tea towel.


When you take jelly roll sponge out of oven, place on another rack to cool for 5 minutes. Then when cooled down, turn out into prepared tea towel.


Remove the baking paper. Let cool for another 5 minutes. Place another tea towel on top of the roll.


Gently roll, lengthwise and let cool for 20 minutes and then unroll.

Chocolate Fudge Filling


In a thick bottom, medium sized sauce pan, place sugar and sift in cocoa. If using semi-sweet chocolate pieces, cut into 1-inch pieces.


Slowly pour in the evaporated milk, and light corn syrup, mixing continuously.


Place sauce pan over medium-low heat and continuously stir till the thermometer register 110ºC or 230ºF or till the fudge clings to back of wooden spoon.


Add the butter and the vanilla; stirring well.


Remove from fire and keep stirring till almost cool.


Set aside and keep some for decorating.

Meringue Icing


In a small sauce pan, pour in water and then add sugar and light corn syrup.


Place over medium heat; do not stir.


Let the sugar-water mixture boil till the thermometer registers for soft ball stage (115ºC or 235ºF)


While the sugar is boiling, start with the egg whites.


In a small mixing bowl, using electric mixer, beat egg whites until stiff but not dry and then slowly pour in the syrup over the beaten whites, beating constantly all the while; continue to beat until the meringue has cooled to room temperature.


Beat in the vanilla. Set aside.



When all components are ready, spread chocolate fudge all over the inside of the roll.


Then spread a thin layer of meringue all over the fudge.


Carefully roll lengthwise and transfer into serving plate.


Frost the top of the roll with meringue and decorate by drizzling the remaining fudge or torch until the meringue is slightly toasted.

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